by Lumai Mubanga
Launched in 2017 by the Linux foundation, hyper ledger has been gaining momentum, perhaps more that bitcoin blockchain. What is it that could be making hyperledger more appealing than its predecessor? Could hyperledger in the long ran overtake bitcoin? If so, in what area? This article endeavors to speculate on this subject based on current developments.
Differences in origin
While bitcoins origin is hidden in mystery, the origin of hyper ledger seems to have been inspired by the growth and popularity of bitcoins. While the motive behind the founding of bitcoins was to some extent the decentralization of monetary and financial control from large and dominated by financial institutions, the motive behind hyper ledger was purely to solve some of the most pressing challenges across industries. Thus, while the bitcoins founder is still unknown, at least more than 30 companies came together with a common goal. This has inspired many to join the network, as we will see shortly.
Permissionless Vs Permissioned
One would argue that a permissionless blockchain would attract more players than a permissioned blockchain. On the contrary, the hyper ledger has in the last few years witnessed growth more than the bitcoin network. For once, permissionless is open for anyone to join and disjoin at will. This of course has its own security concerns. Nevertheless, a permissioned blockchain like hyperledger requires all participants to undergo a vetting process, besides having restricted access to some modules within the network. Despite that, hyperledger has defied expert predictions that people prefer more freedom than restrictions.
Cryptocurrencies and Protocols
While the main drive behind bitcoins was the creation of a cryptocurrency that would make money digital and globally accepted, the initial drive for hyperledger was not the creation of cryptocurrency. Rather it was but the underlying distributed ledger and smart contract technology platforms, as exemplified in both bitcoins and ethereum. The community saw much more than a currency, but a community of problem solvers through open-source software. Although recently, metacoin was launched as the first cryptocurrency on the hyper ledger, perhaps coming as an afterthought.
The proof of work protocol on bitcoin has been a thorn in the flesh that has to some extent affected the exponential growth of bitcoin, partly or largely due to its expensive hardware machinery. Hyperledger has various consensus protocols in combination with smart contracts, which are completely absent in bitcoins. This powerful combination of friendly protocols and smart contracts have propelled hyperledger to higher heights.
It is obvious that hyperledger has continued to grow both in membership and product line. Created as an open-source collaborative effort to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies, hyperledger recently celebrated the inclusion of 8 new members including Walmart, Clear, and Conduent early this year. In the last quarter of this year (2020), hyperledger announces a further increase in its membership in the big names such as Chainstack, SIMBA Chain, SIX Digital Exchange, and Visa; New Certified Service Providers include NEC, SAP, Tech Mahindra, and Tencent SAN FRANCISCO, according to its website.
Clearly, hyperledger, with its unique business model, has clear advantages over the ethereum and bitcoin networks. Although each platform has its own pros and cons, hyperledger continues to show growth and resilience. Whether it will surpass or has surpassed bitcoin is a matter of debate. Only time will tell.